Are you in the process of setting your New Year intentions or goals for 2022?
Here are 3 simple lifestyle habits to incorporate into the new year that will make a big difference
Gratitude is essential for your mental health and overall well-being. Practicing gratitude
activates the brain to release serotonin and dopamine, our “feel-good” neurotransmitters.
A daily gratitude practice can help us through difficult periods by helping us to appreciate all that
we already have.
Express your gratitude with these 4 exercises over the next year:
Keep a daily journal of things for which you are grateful. Recounting a favourite experience from
the day or listing five things you’re grateful for are all good places to start.
For visual learners, gratitude mapping is ideal. It entails making a visual mood board of all the
things you’re thankful for. You can use this as a daily reminder to be grateful.
Write down 10 things that you’re grateful for on small pieces of paper and place them in a jar.
Give the jar a shake the next time you’re feeling low and pick out one slip of paper. This strategy
will remind you of something positive in your life to be grateful for.
Gratitude can be incorporated into a meditation practice. You can choose to concentrate on
things for which you are grateful, or you may find it simpler to meditate on how you arrived at
Stress and anxiety around is sadly becoming the norm for so many.
But the key to relief might be much simpler than you think…
By performing simple breathing exercises, you can intentionally relax your nervous system,
which controls your heart, digestion, and other bodily systems. In fact, breath work can also help
● Lower your blood pressure
● Correct cardiac arrhythmia
● Relieve digestive issues.
● And improve blood circulation throughout the body which can aid in the reduction of stress
One of my most favorite breathing exercises to reduce stress levels is the 4-7-8 technique. I’d
recommend doing it twice per day for optimal effects on the nervous system:
- Keep your mouth closed and inhale through your nose while counting to four.
- Hold your breath for a count of seven.
- Exhale through your mouth loudly to a count of eight.
- Inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times for a total of four breaths.
Did you know that your thirty-minute workout probably isn’t compensating for the amount of time
you spend sitting?
It’s recommended that we exercise for at least 30 minutes every day, however, 30 minutes only
accounts for 2% of the day and many of us spend the rest of our time sitting.
Excessive sitting has been shown to be harmful to our health in a variety of ways, with some
studies even saying that sitting is as harmful as smoking. But the good news is, there are ways
we can overcome this…
This is where NEAT comes in!
NEAT stands for Non–Exercise Activity Thermogenesis. Except for when we sleep or take part
in sports, thermogenesis occurs with every activity we engage in. This includes:
- Yard work
- Walking to work
- And even fidgeting.
People with high NEAT “scores” typically fidget, walk and obtain more movement throughout the
day. The way NEAT works is simple…
If we sit less and move more, we live longer!
We can control our weight, heart health and levels of inflammation by balancing the amount of
energy we consume with the amount of energy we expend. When NEAT isn’t a regular part of
your day, certain inflammation markers have been proven to rise.
Unsurprisingly, people who live in the blue zones (parts of the world where a higher than usual
number of people live longer than average) acquire higher levels of NEAT by walking to their
neighbors’ houses or to the shop, gardening and doing tasks by hand.
So, how can you increase your NEAT score for a longer and healthier life?
● Get a sit-to-stand desk.
● Take a walk after each meal.
● Don’t text family from the room next door.
● Move around while watching TV and when on the phone
● Walk instead of driving.
● Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
Which of these 3 habits are you going to include in your New Year resolutions?
Stress is stress to the body.
Often when we think of stress, we only think of the daily mental/emotional stress. However, it’s
so much more than that.
When there is excess stress in our life (in any form) it causes inflammation. At the root of most
illnesses is excess inflammation in the body.
Are you aware of these six forms of stress present in your life?
- Negative thoughts.
Many people are unaware that their thoughts can contribute greatly to stress. In fact, negative
thoughts have been linked to:
● High blood pressure
● And heart disease.
Did you know that stress can be cumulative? This means that the little stresses in your everyday
life add up. Examples of microstressors include:
● Getting cut off in traffic
● Monotonous work
● Losing your car keys
- Unhealthy habits.
Your lifestyle plays key roles in the development of chronic stress. It’s important to slow down,
and set aside some time for yourself everyday. Unhealthy habits that contribute to stress
● Poor nutrition
● Excessive alcohol
● And lack of sleep.
- Physical stress.
This can be anything from sitting with poor posture, to conditions such as arthritis, both of which
put a strain on the body that can be just as damaging as an injury. Other forms of physical
● Chronic Illnesses
● Colds & flus
● Silent infections
- Environmental stress.
Your environment can affect your mental and physical health. Loud noises, for example, can
cause anxiety, while dark and cold settings can make you feel unmotivated. Environmental
stress can also come in the form of:
● Air and water impurities
● And toxins from pesticides or plastics.
- Major life changes.
Change is an inevitable part of life. However, certain changes can work in your favour whilst
others can work against you if you let them. Stress can take its toll on the body from something
as simple as moving house, to something bigger such as:
● The death of a loved one
● Or having a child.
Sometimes you have little control over what stresses life throws at you.
However, you CAN learn to handle unavoidable stress in healthier ways.
6 Daily Habits to Reduce Stress
Are you reducing stress with all seven of these daily habits?
- Deep Breathing
Throughout the day, many people breathe shallowly. Taking a few minutes every few hours to
take slow, deep breaths are a great way to reduce stress.
We often spend all day locked in shallow, neurotic breathing patterns. Slow, deep breaths are
an incredibly effective way to control stress from anywhere.
- Get Outside
We often spend up to 90% or more of our days inside. Lack of sunlight and polluted indoor air
can add additional stress to our system.
Spending time in nature has been shown to help lower cortisol (and inflammation), reduce
depression and anxiety, and support the immune system.
- Nurture Relationships
Did you know loneliness may be more harmful than obesity?! On the flip side, forming social
connections and nurturing relationships can help reduce stress.
- Focus on Sleep
While you sleep, this is the time where the body restores itself. In addition, sleep deprivation can
increase overall stress to your body.
- Exercise daily.
Getting the right amount of exercise is paramount to decreasing stress. Not enough or too much
can both add excess stress to the body.
Sitting for long periods throughout the day is catastrophic for your health. Moving for 30 minutes
everyday can help keep the stress at bay.
- Be mindful
Ever found yourself in a negative loop of thoughts? By focusing on the present moment or
Our minds often loop in negative thoughts meditating for ten (or even five) minutes a day can
help minimize these loops.
The TOP 7 supplements to reduce stress levels
The TOP 7 supplements to reduce stress levels
In addition to changing your lifestyle, adding in targeted supplementation can also help to
Licorice root has been proven to help your body produce more DHEA (a hormone that your
body makes naturally in the adrenal gland). Licorice root’s cortisol-sparing properties aid in the
maintenance of energy levels, resulting in a better reaction to stressful conditions.
Omega-3 fatty acids, which are commonly found in fish oil, have a variety of biological actions in
the body. They have been proven to aid in stress reduction by lowering stress-related
Magnesium regulates the activity of the body’s stress-response system, and research suggests
that increasing magnesium intake can help to lower anxiety, stress and your response to fear.
Vitamin B12 deficiency has been linked to adrenal stress as well as vitamin B5. It’s especially
important to take a high-quality B-complex vitamin supplement if you’re limiting or eliminating
meat from your diet to combat adrenal exhaustion.
Vitamin C, sometimes known as a “stress-busting” nutrient, appears to lower the impact of
stress on the body as well as the time it takes to recover from stressful events.
There is a strong link between vitamin D levels and mental health. In fact, studies have proven
that 1,000 IU of vitamin D per day can reduce fatigue and anxiety, along with reducing your risk
of adrenal dysfunction (common with long periods of stress), multiple sclerosis, and depression.
Selenium deficiency has been linked to poor adrenal function. Supplementing with this nutrient
can improve your mood by reducing inflammation and protecting your cells against the damage
caused by free radicals.
It’s important to note that you should always consult with your doctor before trying any
Feel like you need additional support to help reduce your stress? This is something that we can
help you with! Sign up